News / Africa

Report: Nigeria Has Largest Displaced Population in Africa

FILE - Families from Gwoza, Borno State, displaced by the violence and unrest caused by the insurgency, are seen at a refugee camp in Mararaba Madagali, Adamawa State, Feb. 18, 2014.
FILE - Families from Gwoza, Borno State, displaced by the violence and unrest caused by the insurgency, are seen at a refugee camp in Mararaba Madagali, Adamawa State, Feb. 18, 2014.
Heather Murdock
A new report shows that Nigeria now has the largest internally displaced population in Africa, and the third largest in the world.  In recent years, hundreds of thousands of people fled Boko Haram insurgents in the northeast but some families are returning to their homes, saying there is nowhere safe for them to hide.
 
Last month, reports circulated that residents of Kala Balge, a farming community in northeastern Nigeria, had killed 200 Boko Haram insurgents.  About ten days ago, militants came back for revenge.
 
Abba Abdulmumini, a Kala Balge community leader, said they stormed 10 villages in the area, burning homes, killing at least four people and sending thousands of people running for their lives.

“The situation is quite pathetic.  And it's like the Nigerian government is not willing to act.  People are being killed like chickens,” said Abdulmumini.

He said with no security forces in the area people wanted to keep fighting, but they ran out of ammunition.

“The fighting power of the Boko Haram insurgents cannot be matched by the local weapons around.  In fact, they have the heart to fight but they don’t have the weapons.  They don’t have the arms,” said Abdulmumini.

Those who fled found no help in a makeshift camp by the Cameroon border.  Emergency officials said the area was too dangerous for aid workers to access.
 
Some Kala Balge residents are now returning with their livestock, saying there was not enough grazing land on the other side of the border.  
 
On top of that, the militants appear able to attack at any place and any time of their choosing.  Last week about 350 people were killed in attacks on villages in Borno State, the heart of the insurgency, and one of three Nigerian states that has been under emergency rule for more than a year.  

A report released last week by the Norwegian Refugee Council and the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre says there are about 3.3 million displaced people in Nigeria, making it the third-largest displaced population in the world after Syria and Colombia.
 

Emmanuel Ogebe is a Nigeria expert with the Jubilee Campaign, a Christian human rights organization.  He said the government has done little to help the displaced.

“The atrocities are continuing to worsen and the government of Nigeria needs to have a strategic human impact mitigation plan, which we don’t see," said Ogebe.
 
Khalifa Dikwa, a political analyst and former lecturer at the University of Maiduguri, said for civilians fleeing their homes, the danger was often not just from the insurgents.  
 
He said many people ran because they were caught in the crossfire.

“Both the security agents and the Boko Haram kill them.  They are not protected,” said Dikwa.
 
Abdulmumini said villagers, who returned to Kala Balge, said Boko Haram tried to take over the community after the attacks, offering to act as a de facto government.  They also went house-to-house confiscating weapons.
 
Villagers said they didn’t want to publicly discuss Boko Haram, even anonymously, for security reasons.  In the past five years, the radical group has killed thousands of people, and kidnapped hundreds of others including more than 200 schoolgirls that have been held captive for nearly two months.

(Ardo Hazzad contributed to this report from Bauchi, Ibrahima Yakubu contributed to this report from Kaduna.)

You May Like

US Investors Eye IPO for China's Alibaba

E-commerce giant handled 80 percent of China's online business last year, logging more Internet transactions than US-based Amazon.com and eBay combined More

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

As cease-fire begins, Palestinians celebrate in streets; Israelis remain wary More

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

In treatment of a 12-year-old boy Chinese doctors used a 3-D printer and special software to create an exact replica of vertebra More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Chidi Onuohaegbu from: Lagos Nigeria
June 09, 2014 12:14 PM
Government first displaced her citizens by running an aligarchy form of governance. The masses wept over the years and result to arms. The dearth of corruption in government has made it impossible to locate missing $20billion meant for the Nigerian masses. Displacement will continue to be a ''living thing'' until system change that will accommodate the populace.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implanti
X
August 27, 2014 4:53 PM
A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. VOA News reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Northern California Quake: No Way to Know When Next One Will Hit

A magnitude 6.0 earthquake rocked northern California’s Napa Valley on Sunday. Roads twisted and water mains burst. It was the wine country’s most severe quake in 15 years, and while hospitals treated many people, no one was killed. Arash Arabasadi has more from Washington on what the future may hold for those residents living on a fault line.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video Ukraine: Captured Troops Proof of Russian Role in Separatist Fight

Ukrainian officials say they have captured Russian soldiers on Ukrainian territory -- the latest accusation of Moscow's involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine. VOA's Gabe Joselow reports from the Ukrainian side of the battle, where soldiers are convinced of Russia's role.
Video

Video Rubber May Soon Come From Dandelions

Synthetic rubber has been around for more than a century, but quality tires for cars, trucks and aircraft still need up to 40 percent or more natural rubber content. As the source of natural rubber, the rubber tree, is prone to disease and can be affected by bad weather. So scientists are looking for replacements. And as VOA’s George Putic reports, they may have found one in a ubiquitous weed.
Video

Video Jewish Life in Argentina Reflected in Yiddish Tango

Jewish people from across Europe and Russia have been immigrating to Argentina for hundreds of years. They brought with them dance music that were eventually mixed with Argentine tango. The result is Yiddish tango -- a fusion of melodies and cultural experiences that is still evolving today. Elizabeth Lee reports from the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles, where one band is bringing Yiddish tango to an American audience.

AppleAndroid